Twenty-seven winners have been selected as recipients of a coveted 2019 AmeriStar Award, a prestigious design award for the packaging industry, produced by IoPP, The Institute of Packaging Professionals.
A roster of 12 judges from various segments of the packaging industry evaluated this year’s entries in person, examining package innovation, product protection, economics, performance, marketing and environmental impact.
The highest award for flexible packaging went to Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, who partnered with ProAmpac to design a more sustainable package for the launch of Miracle-Gro Performance Organics' growing media. They achieved this by replacing 25 percent of the traditional oil or natural gas based polyethylene (PE) with Braskem's I'm green PE, a bio-based resin made from Brazilian sugarcane. More importantly, cultivation of sugarcane utilizes carbon dioxide (CO2) and releases oxygen (02) to give bioplastic a negative carbon footprint.
From a cradle-to-gate life-cycle perspective, every ton of I'm green™ PE used in the production of packaging equates to approximately 3.09 tons of CO2 captured from the atmosphere. In addition, Miracle-Gro Performance Organics reuses millions of pounds of organic materials annually in the soil product content, further demonstrating the company's commitment to sustain bility. These extruded structures provide a durable and more sustainable package .
With approval from rigorous testing measures, the new Miracle-Gro Performance Organics' growing media bag can withstand harsh environmental challenges while maintaining the quality and performance of the product Furthermore, the pop off the shelf graphics are UV energy-cured, high-gloss UV coated and high-density UV black inks to enhance the durability of the brand to ensure the sustainability message is seen, and the shelf appeal remains long after point of purchase. UV energy cured inks also play an integral role in the Miracle-Gro Performance Organics environmental impact since they have an extremely low Volatile Organic Compound (VOC). Miracle-Gro Performance Organics growing media packaging was thoughtfully engineered to use the least amount of material required with the optimum percentage of bio resin, 25 percent, to be the most sustainable while retaining product performance, functionality and packaging durability.
Judges considered more than 50 package entries across 17 categories for both professional and student awards, as well as AmeriStar’s prestigious top three awards. The top three AmeriStar awards include the Sustainable Package Award, the Design Excellence Award and the Best of Show Award.
The 2019 top three winners are:
- Best of Show Award Clinique iD by Estée Lauder Companies is a unique dual pump package that delivers lotion and concentrated serum in one push of the actuator. The consumer gets the choice of buying multiple lotion types and combining them with serum cartridges to address specific skin needs.
- Design Excellence Award O-I: EXPRESSIONS by O-I was developed for design agencies, packaging professionals and food & beverage marketers who want to stand out and offer their consumers new reasons to love and choose their brand, O-I: EXPRESSIONS enables late-stage design, combining the integral benefits and heritage of glass with an agile, marketing-focused capability.
- Sustainable Packaging Award Krylon Industrial Quik-Tap Aerosol by Sherwin-Williams is one of the first aerosol paint package to separate the valve and actuator from the can. After use, the reusable device creates an empty, non-pressurized aerosol can that allows for easy recycling.
AmeriStar Award winners by category:
Heaven’s Door Whiskey by Berlin Packaging is a small-batch collection of handcrafted American whiskeys developed in partnership with Bob Dylan. The custom rounded-shoulder bottle features Dylan’s distinctive iron gates created at his Black Buffalo Ironworks Studio from objects found on farms and scrapyards across America.
Drug and Pharmaceutical
- An elegant child-resistant packaging solution by Duallok was developed to provide the most beautiful, user friendly and compliant package for high-end controlled substances. The patented double-lock design, certified under the 16 CFR 1700 guidelines for child resistance, keeps kids safe and brands compliant.
- Target Simply Balanced Vitamins by TricorBraun was developed because Target Stores decided it was time to enter the upscale nutraceutical market with Simply Balanced™ vitamins in premium packaging. The design is a three-piece solution that attracts consumers with different shapes, colors and color combinations in fully recyclable materials. The bottle features a differentiating oblong shape and wider mouth for easier dispensing, as well as a half-turn, push-and-turn, child-resistant closure to improve safety.
Xbox Adaptive Controller by Microsoft was packaged to create an empowering unboxing experience for anyone who would be gaming with the controller. When designing, Microsoft worked directly with gamers who have limited mobility to understand how to make the unboxing as easy as possible. This package features improvements such as loops acting as a lever to assist in component removal and multiple product access points.
Food (Shelf Stable)
Joyböl Smoothie Bowl by Plastic Ingenuity Inc. creates a unique food category in the grab-and-go market. The innovation is centered around creating an all-in-one, highly-portable, shelf-stable smoothie bowl for health-conscientious millennials on the go, resulting in one of the world's first all-in-one smoothie bowl package.
Roll Over-Wrap Tray by Clearly Clean Products, LLC is one of the world’s only patented, 100 percent recyclable, smooth-edge PET overwrap food tray. It’s produced in multiple colors (including clear) and is available with or without pads. It’s utilized for meat, poultry, seafood and produce – and customized for the customer.
Health and Beauty Aids
- Korrvu Inserts for Fragrance Packaging by Sealed Air can be formed over a range of products, creating a versatile and dynamic option to replace traditional vacuum-formed molds. This curbside recyclable packaging solution meets the growing e-commerce demand for sustainable product protection while maintaining a luxurious, high-end look.
- L’Oréal Paris Elvive Rapid Reviver by Viva IML Tubes utilizes Viva’s state-of-the art label graphics with true, full-coverage, eye-catching, metallic accents and a parabolic ‘iconic crimp’. The tube itself has a positive sustainability theme with low-emission lifecycle and a fully recyclable total package.
- PACLOCK Bi-Fold Custom Retail Package by Placon. This bi-fold clamshell package for Pacific Lock Co. provides consumers the ability to touch the product without risk of theft prior to purchase. The open-and-fold back panel design gives the package significantly more marketing and graphics space. The package enables consumers to open and close the back panel to read and better understand the product.
- Drinkworks Home Bar Packaging by Drinkworks is easy to lift, carry, un-box and recycle. Lifting and carrying can be accomplished via a top handle and/or 2 x side-panel hand-holds, Unboxing is achieved by releasing two patented side locks and lifting off the box top. This package fulfills the objective of reducing the time and number of steps to un-box the product and minimize awkward lifting of the small appliance.
Advanced Polymer Activation System by Ecolab is a patented automated solution for dispensing powders in wastewater treatment applications. The unit and packaging reduce total cost of operation and improve workplace safety and hygiene by increasing polymer activation with dust-free packaging and dispensing.
ORTHOFIX Medical Tray by Placon – taking design and innovation to the next level with leading sustainability focus on stock and custom retail, food and medical packaging. This custom tray keeps the medical screw suspended to prevent HA coating damage.
- Yankee Candle Holiday Gifting Pack by Newell Brands is a seasonal gift set designed to enable frictionless gifting. Premium decorative packaging was designed to attract consumer attention while offering secondary surprises to the recipient throughout a layered opening experience.
- Pepsi NFL Laces Can by PepsiCo Inc.’s Global Beverage Packaging R&D and Design and Innovation teams is a limited-edition Pepsi Can with innovative packaging that strengthens brand equity. The packaging enhances the consumer sensory experience and drives engagement by breaking out of the straight-walled aluminum cans common in soft drinks.
Saves Food (Foodservice)
- HomeFresh Entree by Placon offers modular stacking and interstacking, leak resistance when lidded, and secure stack engagement to limit package movement when stacked during transportation from foodservice establishment to the home or place of consumption.
- Serve Good Packaging Program by US Foods, Inc. ensures a holistic approach in providing customers with sustainable packaging solutions that align with Serve Good packaging standards. The three E’s (engineer better designs, employ better materials, empower a better end-of-life solution) push the industry toward advancing trends in minimalist packaging, recycling, recyclability and clean packaging. Better design to optimize sizing and material usage ensure that the minimum amount of packaging is used to produce the product.
- Klearfold Keeper CR by HLP Klearfold is the first of its kind, clear, certified child-resistant package for medical and recreational cannabis. Cannabis product producers can now enjoy the marketing and merchandising benefits of clear plastic packaging, while satisfying the CPSC criteria for child-resistant closures. Through the CPSC CR certification process, it became apparent that test-subject kids (42–51 months old) were more motivated to breech the Klearfold Keeper CR package because they could see its contents. In order to stand up to this extra attention, the Keeper CR had to provide a higher level of security than paperboard CR packages.
- Allergy Relief Nasal Spray by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is in keeping with the sustainability initiative that GSK is passionate about and committed to in their packaging strategy. GSK is implementing several improvements that are approved by the respective health authorities while yielding an overall improvement in sustainability and considerably reducing the use of plastic packaging and their carbon footprint of up to 50 percent in some scenarios.
- Reusable Structural Transit Inserts by EPE USA are an innovative application of high-density molded polypropylene engineered parts that are precisely designed to improve product protection in e-commerce transit modes while maintaining SIOC freight benefits and doing so within a 100 percent sustainable system.
- Miracle-Gro Performance Organics by ProAmpac was thoughtfully engineered to use the least amount of material required with the optimum percentage of bio-resin to be the most sustainable while retaining product performance, functionality and packaging durability.
All four of the 2019 Student AmeriStar Award winning entries are from the California Polytechnic State University.
First Place: ReNood allows consumers to customize and create a meal specific to their taste by mixing and matching individual pods of ingredients. The product also reduces food waste and encourages repeated buys. ReNood’s containers are made of cassava starch, which is compostable and recyclable.
Second Place: Butter Drops capitalizes on the fact that ordinary butter sticks can be a hassle to use and store. Its wax wrapping paper is difficult to use and non-recyclable. Butter Drops is a novel packaging system for butter. It is eye-catching on the shelves, conveniently portioned to minimize food waste, and fully compostable and recyclable.
Third Place: Halo takes deodorant packaging to a new level, reducing the amount of material and creating a simple new design that is easy to use for the consumer.
Honorable Mention: California Kissed is a novel metal can system that maximizes space efficiency during distribution and storage. Easily open it using a pull tab, which includes a tamper-evident feature. Its lid also allows draining the contents and re-closing the container, thus reducing food waste.
Full information about each of the 2019 AmeriStar Award Winners is available online. Be sure to visit IoPP in booth C-1159 at PACK EXPO Las Vegas 2019 (Sept. 23–25; Las Vegas) where a joint reception and ceremony honoring the AmeriStar Award winners will take place. PACK EXPO Las Vegas attendees who visit the IoPP booth and/or the Showcase of Packaging Innovations will have the opportunity to vote on-site for a special “People’s Choice” AmeriStar Award winner to be announced at the reception ceremony.